Art Dubai to partner with Misk Institute

 Shakir Hassan Al Said's untitled painting from 1957, part of the Baghdad Group for Modern Art

Shakir Hassan Al Said's untitled painting from 1957, part of the Baghdad Group for Modern Art

Art Dubai has announced today the Saudi Arabian Misk Art Institute. The relationship will manifest in several ways across the forthcoming fair including a partnership with with Art Dubai’s Modern section, dedicated sessions in Art Dubai’s Modern Symposium; a non-selling exhibition celebrating Modern art from the region entitled That Feverish Leap into the Fierceness of Life, curated by Dr. Till Fellrath and Dr. Sam Bardaouil and well as an exclusive preview screening of Reframe Saudi, a Virtual Reality film on contemporary art in Saudi Arabia.

The exhibition will feature five modernist artist groups and schools spanning five decades in five Arab cities. It derives its title from the 1951 founding manifesto of the Baghdad Group for Modern Art, reflecting these artists' passionate contributions to modernism within their respective socio-political contexts. By highlighting the contradictions, as well as the similarities between these groups, the show reveals the diverse expressions of modernism across the Arab world.

 Mohammed Melehi's 'Untitled,' 1976. Melehi's work, part of the Casablanca School of Art of the 1960s and 70s, will be on show in Art Dubai's show 'That Feverish Leap into the Fierceness of Life'.

Mohammed Melehi's 'Untitled,' 1976. Melehi's work, part of the Casablanca School of Art of the 1960s and 70s, will be on show in Art Dubai's show 'That Feverish Leap into the Fierceness of Life'.

Founded in 2017, the Misk Art Institute was established to encourage artistic production in Saudi Arabia, seeking to establish strong connections with the Kingdom’s artistic past through documenting and recording cultural histories from Saudi Arabia and the wider region, while enabling cultural diplomacy and exchange, and being an artist-centred cultural innovator.

The partnership and its physical manifestations at Art Dubai aim to strengthen and celebrate some of the objectives that Misk Art Institute and the fair have in common; education on art from the region, creating a platform for the regional cultural scene, and acting as an ambassador for Modern and Contemporary art alike.

Art Dubai Director Myrna Ayad said: “We are delighted to partner with the Misk Art Institute, an organisation which shares our support for educational initiatives in the arts and culture sector. No doubt, Misk’s activations in both the Contemporary hall by way of VR presentations, and the Modern hall through its support of the exhibition, That Feverish Leap into the Fierceness of Life, will augment the overall visitor experience to the fair.”

Ahmed Mater, Director of the Misk Art Institute said: “It feels particularly fitting to forge this partnership through the presentation of Art Dubai Modern. When considered in the context of wider Arab visual arts narratives, both the Misk Art Institute and Art Dubai are relatively young, yet it is through these historical channels that we have come together. Though we are newly inaugurated, our focus does not depart from the past; instead, we embrace regional art histories and cultural archives as the substantial and essential foundations of sustainable future growth. In many ways, the very existence of our institution is predicated on the strength, understanding and preservation of these cultural narratives – with them, we can build new, rooted stories for the future.”